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PICTURE: Getty Images
Druids celebrate the spring Equinox
Members of The Druid Order walk in procession towards Tower Hill to celebrate the Spring Equinox in London. The spring
Equinox, which celebrates new life, fertility and when daytime and night are of equal duration, is celebrated at numerous locations
throughout the country. The Druid Order has been holding public ceremonies in London since 1717.
in deadly attacks
Suicide bombers in the Yemeni capital
Sanaa blew themselves up during Friday
prayers at two mosques used by supporters
of Shi’ite rebels, killing 126 people and
wounding 260, medical sources said, in the
country’s deadliest militant attack in years.
Islamic State, an al Qaeda offshoot that has
seized large areas of Iraq and Syria, claimed
responsibility for the attacks, in which four
bombers wearing explosive belts targeted
worshippers in and outside the crowded
The Sanaa bombings happened as
warplanes attacked the
presidential palace in the southern city of
Aden for the second day.
Anti-aircraft guns fired on two planes which
dropped bombs on an area that includes the
residence of President Abd-Rabbu Mansour
Hadi. He was unharmed, sources at the
Yemen is torn by a power struggle between
the Iranian-backed Houthi rebels in the
north and Hadi, who has set up a rival power
base in the south backed by Sunni-led Gulf
Arab states. The mosques in Sanaa are known
to be used mainly by supporters of the Shi’ite
Muslim Houthi group, which controls most
of northern Yemen, including Sanaa.
The rise to power of the Houthis since
September last year has deepened divisions
in Yemen’s complex web of political and
One witness said he heard two successive
blasts at one of the mosques, known as the
Badr mosque, in a busy neighbourhood in
“I was going to pray at the mosque then I
heard the first explosion, and a second later I
heard another one,” the witness said.
United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-
moon condemned “the terrorist attacks” in
Yemen and called on all sides “to immediately
cease all hostile actions and exercise
maximum restraint,” according to a statement
by the United Nations.
Hospitals in Sanaa were over whelmed by
the dead and wounded, appealing for blood
donors to help treat the large number of
casualties. A witness at the Badr mosque
said he counted at least 25 bloody bodies
or corpses lying in the street and inside the
One man carried a child in his arms.
The Houthi-linked Al-Masirah television
channel showed young men in traditional
Yemeni clothes carrying lifeless bodies, some
dripping with blood, out of the mosque.
A third suicide bomber tried to blow
himself up a mosque in the northern Houthi
stronghold of Sadaa province. But the bomb
went off prematurely, killing only the bomber,
a security source said.
Islamic State claimed responsibility for that
attack too, vowing to carry out more assaults
on the Houthis.
“ Let the polytheist Houthis know that the
soldiers of the Islamic State will not rest and
will not stay still until they extirpate them,”
the group said in a statement posted by
supporters on Twitter.
“God willing, this operation is only a part of
the coming flood.”
Tensions have risen since Hadi fled to Aden
in February after escaping from Sanaa, where
he was held for a month under house arrest
by Houthi forces in control of the capital.
Hadi has been trying to consolidate his
hold over Aden to challenge the Houthis’
ambitions to control the whole country.
Thirteen people were killed on Thursday
when forces loyal to Hadi fought their way
into Aden’s international airport and wrested
an adjacent military base from a renegade
officer, Aden governor Abdulaziz bin
Both the fighting on the ground and
subsequent air attacks appeared to be part of
a growing power struggle between Hadi and
the Houthi group, which is allied with former
president Ali Abdullah Saleh, a fierce critic of
A Japanese designer is challenging
accepted ideals at Tokyo Fashion
Week, with a collection unveiled by
models who are blind, wear prosthetic
limbs or use a wheelchair.
In his unorthodox show for the
“tenbo” brand, Takafumi Tsuruta chose
a mix of disabled and able-bodied
models to showcase his quirky designs
overnight, with several donning bright
He is the latest designer to celebrate
disability at a major fashion week, after
an actress with Down’s Syndrome and
a male amputee graced runways this
year in New York and Milan.
“ We are introducing something
called ‘people’s design’,” Tsuruta said.
“ The clothes are aimed at everyone
in the world. I think it’s fashion’s
responsibility to have trendy and easy-
His dream-themed autumn-winter
collection included details such as
magnetic buttons and reversible
jumpers, aiming to reach a wider
Ami Sano, who was born with a
rare disorder that left her without
limbs except a left foot, said before
performing she “really didn’t dream”
she would end up modelling at fashion
The 24-year-old appeared before
the packed-out hall in her wheelchair,
donning a white wedding dress, in the
show ’s moving finale.
“Simple clothing for us is great.
I think people in general will be
thankful for this type of design and
there are various ways of arranging the
pieces,” Sano said.
She said “there is still a wall” in Japan
between those with and those without
disabilities but she thought the show
could help to challenge prejudice.
“ I would like people to keep having
hope,” she said.
Opening the show was blind
model Rina Akiyama, 27, who won
gold swimming at the London
2012 Paralympics and works at a
Akiyama, who wore a dotted trapeze
dress inspired by Braille said it was
“ very rare” for such a fashion event in
“I think there are a considerable
number of disabled people who don’t
leave their homes,” she said.
“It would be great if chances like
Wheelchairs on catwalk at Tokyo fashion show
Hong Kong man killed,
A Hong Kong man accused of killing,
dismembering, salting and cooking his
parents has been found guilty of double
During his 20-day trial a court was told
Henry Chau, 31, finally packed his elderly
mother’s and father’s body parts into
lunchboxes “ like barbecued pork”.
The severed heads of 65-year-old Chau
Wing-ki and his wife Siu Yuet-yee, 62,
were found in March 2013, stuffed into two
refrigerators in a bloodstained apartment,
days after they were reported missing.
Other remains were found in a rubbish bin.
A jur y at the city’s High Court found Chau
guilty overnight on both counts of murder
by a majority of 8-to-1, the South China
Morning Post reported.
His friend Tse Chun-kei was found not
guilty on two counts of murder.Both had
pleaded not guilty to the charges.
Chau will be sentenced on Monday.
Chau initially told police his parents had
gone to mainland China but later admitted
to the murder on an internet messaging
In evidence read to the city’s High Court
last year, Chau claimed he planned to mislead
the police in order to buy himself some time
to say goodbye to friends.
“ My murdering partner and I were planning
to make it a missing person case and dump
the body piece by piece,” he said in a group
Chau also called himself a “psychopath” and
said: “I cannot empathise with people’s pain
because of my experience from childhood
and adolescence. ”
Seized ivory burned in Ethiopia
Ethiopia burned 6.1 tonnes
of ivory overnight, tusks and
trinkets seized from poachers
and traders over 20 years in a
country that has lost 90% of its
elephants in just three decades.
Police and park officers
poured petrol on the stockpile
at a ceremony on a hill in the
middle of the capital’s Gulele
Botanic Garden. It was lit by
Deputy Prime Minister Demeke
“ This is a vital stepping stone
for strengthened activities,” he
said of the symbolic gesture
in a speech, referring to more
stringent laws against poaching.
The ash will be used to fertilise
90,000 trees to be planted at
the 30ha site, and a statue of an
elephant will stand among the
Poaching has surged across
sub-Saharan Africa in the past
few years, with gangs killing
elephants and rhinos to feed
ever-increasing demand for ivory
and horns from Asia.
A 2014 United Nations and
Interpol report estimated that
about 20,000 to 25,000 elephants
were killed in Africa every year,
out of a total population of as
many as 650,000.
Neighbouring Kenya burned
15 tonnes of ivory this month.
Ethiopia has about 1900
elephants in nine designated
sites, the African Wildlife
Foundation (AWF) said, citing
an Ethiopian government report.
elephants were killed between
2011 and 2014. Three have been
killed since January this year.
“Ethiopia’s wildlife areas are
spectacular but their wildlife
capacity for managing protected
conser vation strategy, Kathleen
That meant the country was
not realising all the economic
and ecological benefits those
resources have to offer, she said.
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